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printreg, November, 2002
Compressed Gas Storage

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From:Debra Jacobson(djacobson@istc.illinois.edu)
Date:Wed, 06 Nov 2002 10:17:52

Many printers use compressed gas to operate forklifts, etc. Additionally many facilities maintain welding equipment and supplies. Here's some guidance on what OSHA requires these facilities to do.

Ref. 29 CFR 1910.253(b)(2) Oxygen cylinders must be stored a minimum of 20 feet away from other flammable gases or a noncombustible barrier 5 ft. high with a 1 hour fire resistance rating must separate the two. Cylinders must be stored in assigned locations (sign posted) and be secured to protect from fall or damage. [When stored outside in locked racks, compressed gas cylinders must be stored at least 50 feet inside the property line.]

Acetylene cylinders must be stored valve end up. Oxygen cylinders (commonly used for welding) must not be stored near combustible material, especially oil and grease or near carbide and acetylene or other fuel gas cylinders (i.e., natural gas/propane).

No greater than 300 lbs of LP gas may be stored inside a building. This could include the compressed gas used to operate forklifts. If spare cylinders are located inside the building, total volume of LP gas stored should not exceed this limit. This inside storage limit excludes cylinders in use or mounted for ready use. Empty cylinders must have their valves closed and caps in place at all time where applicable.

Empty cylinders should be stored in accordance with the above mentioned storage/compatibility conditions. Even when preparing for pick-up by vendor, cylinders which once contained reactive materials should not be stored together.

Cylinders with leaking valves or fittings which cannot be stopped by closing the valve, must be taken outdoors away from ignition sources and slowly emptied.

Debra Jacobson

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